Friday, July 9, 2010

Hall of Fame: Jocelyn Sessions

If you read this blog, then you already know her name.  She could have gone in my Youth Group Hall of Fame when I told the story of she and Todd Willis dominating the sidewalks of New York.  I could have inducted her when I told the story of Sculpting Tickets in Atlanta following the Mountain Top mission trip.  She might have gone in the Hall just for her adventures with our Breakfast Club.  She would be deserving of special recognition if her only contribution to our student ministry at FUMC-K had been hosting the first Coffeehouse we had after my arrival and gracing the audience with her signature song:

Oh I wish I was a three-legged doggie, that is what I'd truly like to be
For if I were a three-legged doggie, I wouldn't have to lift my leg to pee...

But there is much more to the story of Jocelyn Sessions (on far right in picture, taken on the Memphis Mission Trip in 1996; they seem to be dancing...) than just those stories.  And today I want to remember all that she brought to our youth family as I induct her into my Hall of Fame.

Jocelyn had been a very active member of the youth ministry of FUMC-K way before my arrival in 1994.  In fact, when I arrived she was president of the Youth Council (a group I disbanded in favor of our Youth Counselor group) and a real leader among the youth.  During my early days there she encouraged me, advised me, and ate lunch with me at D'Angelo's.  She was at youth group every Sunday and participated in the vast majority of our trips and special events.  She never missed a mission trip; her heart was all about serving others.  Jocelyn was also a seeker.  She attended our Bible studies and always asked great questions and contributed in many ways.  Jocelyn was a GREAT youth group member.

And then there were the stories.  Jocelyn always said the funniest things, as witnessed by all of the adventures mentioned at the beginning of today's post.  But my personal favorite took place at the Milford Plaza Hotel in New York.  We were there in March of 1996, and on one chilly Monday night a group of us gathered in my room to watch the NCAA national championship basketball game.  Jocelyn stuck her head in the room and looked at the TV for a moment, then asked if we were watching the Orlando MagicConnor Lewis responded that no, we were watching the Final Four.  Jocelyn watched the game for another moment and then asked one of the classic questions ever:  "Where are the other two teams?"  It was an absolute classic...

When the Class of '95 (members of the Hall of Fame themselves) graduated, it would have been very easy for Jocelyn to drop out of our programs.  Her closest friends were gone, and her senior year was incredibly busy.  But she stayed.  She took on more of a leadership role than ever.  Everyone who was a part of that ministry has incredibly fond memories of Jocelyn Sessions.  Today she is a mother and a wife, and she still has the best stories to tell.  I have a feeling that someday when my memory starts to fade and I don't remember all of the things I share here each day, my thoughts of Jocelyn will remain.  And isn't that the very definition of someone who belongs in the Hall of Fame?  Welcome aboard , Jocelyn.  You still have an impact on my life- my son was singing the Three-Legged Doggie Song just last night!  Join us again tomorrow as Hall of Fame Week wraps-up with the addition of one Jerry Lee Hanbery...

Because of Jesus,


  1. Love this. Classic story, for sure! I still think of Jocelyn each time March Madness rolls around.

  2. Yes, it is one of my all-time favs!

  3. Carl, this is so sweet! I had so much fun while you led youth group. I've never had such a genuine church family as I did at FUMCK (despite the fact that it's the worst church acronym ever! =)You've impacted my sons lives too; I sing youth group songs to get them calm enough to fall sleep. They sing along to them riding in the car too. And golly do I miss hanging out with Todd and Jerry, mission trips, & everybody!
    Also, I've meant to tell you sorry for finding every loophole in every game you came up with. The mutiny had to be annoying though I was trying to be funny! Thank you Carl & Marilyn for all the laughter, love and memories!

  4. You are welcome, Jocelyn! And I long ago forgave you and Todd for your "creative cheating..."

  5. Anonymous8/10/2010

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